Spitball @ Cleveland Print Room features CSU photo Alumni

February 26, 2018

Photo by Aja Grant

Cleveland Print Room
Opening reception Friday, March 2 @ 5pm

Spitball was Co-curated by the Loop’s Kory Gasser and CPR’s Shari Wilkins, Spitball features photographers age 30 and under.

The exhibition features CSU photo alumni, including Aja Grant, Alena Rosa Reyes and Anna Tararova. Other artists include Matt Beckwith, Kat Cade, Melissa Sue Jeffrey, Herald Martin, Jesse Mervis,  Jamie Richey, Alison Scarpulla, Melissa Schwachenwald Raymond Scott, Manda Specht, Kate Sweeney, Chad Tindel, and Jessica Will.

Come out an support young photographic artists like yourselves. Say you’re going on the Facebook event page.


CSU Photo Alumnus Featured in Magazine

February 20, 2018


CSU photo’s own Omid Tavakoli’s art work is featured in the current issue of Around Kent. Omid studied Art History and Photography at CSU. He sold many of the pieces in his Merit Scholar Exhibition to President Berkman and the Mandel Foundation and won the Best of Photography Award. More about that here and here.


After graduation, Omid did one year at Cleveland Institute of Art tuition free on the CSU-CIA Post Baccalaureate Program. He is currently doing an MFA at Kent State University.

CSU /CIA Post-Bac Program

February 6, 2018


Download the PDF info: letterSize_CIA_18

Go to the Online Entry page.

Compositional Guidelines (Not Rules)

January 30, 2018

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There are no unbreakable rules when it comes to how you should compose your photographs After all, who likes rules except for your old school principal or heads of H.R. departments? There are however, several guidelines you can use to help improve the composition of your photos. In this tutorial, I’ve listed 20 of these guidelines along with examples of each. I’ve started with the most basic ones and finished with some of the more advanced composition techniques.

First of all we have to define what is meant by ‘composition’. Composition refers to the way the various elements in a scene are arranged within the frame. As I’ve already mentioned, these are not hard and fast rules but guidelines. That said, many of them have been used in art for thousands of years and they really do help achieve more attractive compositions. I find that I usually have one or more of these guidelines in the back of my mind as I’m setting up a shot.

Read the article here.

Paid Summer Internship @ Cleveland Print Room

January 26, 2018

cpr intern

This summer internship allows the intern to create video content for the Cleveland Print Room website that documents 35mm film processing (developing & printing), along with alternative photographic processes which will be posted on the internet to inform the public of photography processes that are offered as classes. These videos will be used by the organization for informational, marketing and promotional purposes. The intern will gain experience by providing instructional videos that will be used on digital platforms and social media. S/he will have the opportunity to write content related to the media postings. Additionally the intern will get an overview of what it is like to work within a non-profit start-up and practice everyday workflow and management strategies with the CPR team.

Skills: The intern is a talented videographer with experience shooting and editing video content. Experience with digital and analog photography is a plus. Intern will work with Operations Manager, who is a skilled photographer in creating the photographic content for the videos. Intern will work with the Executive Director, whose background in Marketing and Promotions to release content digitally. The intern will shadow staff so that s/he will experience the inner workings and everyday functions of the organization.

Projects Include:
– Create video content for the Cleveland Print Room to use in marketing materials
– Evaluate what digital and video content the Cleveland Print Room needs
– Film, edit, and prepare footage throughout the course of the summer

You can also earn CSU Internship credit. Contact Professor Mark Slankard, or the Jessica in the Dept. of Art & Design office to register if you’re accepted.

This position pays $12/hr, 28 hours a week for 9 weeks. In addition, you will receive a $580 stipend for completing the Arts Intern component of the program. To learn more, and to apply visit the Studio Institute website.

In the News:Analog and Darkroom Photography

November 20, 2017


“As younger generations embrace vintage things — like vinyl records and early gaming consoles — more students have become interested in old-school photography, increasing the demand for analog photography classes in high schools across Manhattan…” Read In High School Darkrooms, Shedding Light on a Vintage Craft in the NYTimes.com.

Photo Finish

“CES, once known as the Consumer Electronics Show, is usually the stuff of drones, smart home gear and other high-tech gadgets. But this year, as thousands of people attended the annual tech gathering in Las Vegas, a 129-year-old brand stole the limelight. Kodak Aliris, the firm that bought Kodak’s film segments, announced during the event that it would reintroduce Ektachrome, a color reversal film discontinued in 2012.” Read more in This is Why Film Photography is Making a Comeback on Time.com.


“You might have a certain image of the generation of artists who reshaped contemporary photography from the 1970s onward. Namely, a dig-your-heels-in reliance on the foundations of craft: things like analog film, hours spent in the darkroom huddled over chemical developing baths, and a cantankerous attitude toward the young people ruining the field with Photoshop and smartphones. Stephen Shore is happy to disrupt those preconceived notions.” Read more Stephen Shore on Why Young Photographers Need to Start with Film on Artsy.net.


The idea behind the crowdfunding campaign was to create a sort of system-agnostic film SLR. The Reflex’s modular build means you can swap out the lens mount for any of the majors: Canon, Nikon, Pentax and so on. Bigger lens selection is always good, but is that enough to make people want to buy in? Read more Reflex Aims to Kickstart Film Photography with a New Old SLR on tech crunch.com.


It looks like a scene from a Southern Gothic film.

The figure, dressed in a white shirt, stands at a lectern like a Bible Belt preacher, shining bright. Behind him the sky is Old Testament-elemental; the clouds gather with the promise of something revelatory. The edges of the picture have a curiously unfocused and dreamlike quality. It is like someone has remembered this single frame from a nightmare, and somehow brought it into being. Read The Toy Camera that Inspired Instagram at bbc.com.


2018-19 Merit Scholarship Competition

November 20, 2017

Merit Header

The Department of Art & Design’s 2018-19 Merit Scholarship competition is now accepting submissions. Submit your best art and design work. And new this year: an Art History scholarship competition! Approx. $40,000 in awards will be distributed. Deadline is March 16, 2018. GOOD LUCK!

Download the submission guidelines here: CSU-Merit-Scholarship-2018-19

Apply online here: https://form.jotform.com/CSUART/MERIT

CSU photo Approved Strobist Kits

November 8, 2017

Here’s everything you’ll need to put together your own CSU photo approved 2-light strobist kit. These are the kits I have available for loan. For the punch that these setups pack, they are remarkably affordable. Each offers full TTL wireless control. Kits like these may be the most affordable route to continue studio and location lighting beyond graduation. Links are to B&H photo.


The bag: 33.5″ Ruggard Tripod / Light Stand Case: $14.95


Light stand #1: Impact Air-Cushioned 8′ Light Stand: $32.95


Light Stand #2: Impact 6′ Light Stand: $19.99


Umbrellas: Impact 33″ White Transluscent Umbrella x2: $9.95ea. x 2 = $19.90


Umbrella Brackets: Phoenix US-A3 Umbrella Swivel x2: $21.95ea. x 2 = $43.90

Universal Accessories Total: $131.69


Flashes for Canon: Yongnuo YN600EX-RT II x 2: $110ea. x 2 = $220


TTL Controller for Canon: Yongnuo Wireless Transmitter YN-E3-RT: $75

Complete Canon Kit: $426.69


Flash #1 and Controller for Nikon: Yongnuo YN685 Speedlight and Controller: $139.95


Flash #2 for Nikon: Yongnuo YN685 Speedlight: $104.88

Complete Nikon Kit: $376.52


Flashes for Sony: Godox TT685S Thinklite x 2: $110ea. x 2 = $220


Transmitter for Sony: Godox X1T-S: $46

Complete Sony Kit: $397.69

Am I forgetting anything? Oh, yes. BATTERIES. These kits each use 10 AAA batteries to operate. I highly recommend investing in a couple sets of rechargeable AAAs. If you have 20 and a charger, you’ll always be in business.

And while these kits are affordable, they aren’t free. You can surely put together even less expensive kits with items purchased from amazon.com or eBay. However, these sites don’t give you the detailed specifications to be confident that they will work as wireless TTL for you. You can go much cheaper with non-dedicated non-TTL kits, or with optical slaves. Here is our attempt to put together the most inexpensive TTL kit from a couple years ago.

Finally, here’s a super cheap kit that I put together from amazon.com. It isn’t TTL, but would do the trick on a budget:


The strobes + transmitters, receivers, modifiers and remote: $109.95


Light stands, umbrellas, brackets and bag: $39.99

Complete Kit: $149.94


Taxel Image Group Seeking Photo Interns

November 6, 2017

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Taxel Image Group offers intern positions for college photography majors coordinated with the winter-spring, summer, and fall-winter terms.

The program is personalized, with a commitment of 10 – 20 hours per week for approximately 15 weeks.

Interns observe and participate in all aspects of the studio operation. Students come from Kent State University, Cuyahoga Community College, Cleveland Institute of Art, Case Western Reserve University, Ohio University, and other institutions, meeting the internship requirements of their curriculum.

There is no monetary compensations for this program.

Interviews for the internship are conducted year round. Students who are interested in this program can schedule an appointment by email or phone.

Please contact Anna Wallace-Birchler at 216-431-2400, anna@taxelimagegroup.com to schedule a time for an in person application and interview.


Taxel Image Group’s studio.

Glenville Exchange with Dawoud Bey

October 26, 2017

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The Glenville Exchanges with Dawoud Bey
November 2, 2017 @ 6:00pm
1470 E. 105th St.
Cleveland, OH

Dawoud Bey (b. 1953, New York, NY) began his career as an artist in 1975 with a series of photographs, “Harlem, USA,” that were later exhibited in his first one-person exhibition at the Studio Museum in Harlem in 1979. Since that time exhibitions have included a mid-career survey of his work, “Dawoud Bey: Portraits 1975-1995,” and a survey exhibition in 2012 “Dawoud Bey: Picturing People.” Additionally, Bey’s critical writings include High Times Hard Times: New York Painting, 1967- 1975, The Van DerZee Studio, and David Hammons: Been There Done That. In 2018 a major forty-year retrospective monograph, Dawoud Bey: Seeing Deeply, will be published by the University of Texas Press.

Dawoud Bey photographs people and things that may otherwise be taken for granted. A 2017 MacArthur Fellow recipient, Bey features subjects who he says “are not always in the larger social conversation.” For the FRONT Triennial, Dawoud Bey’s exhibition will expand the notion of the documentary nature of photography and question the limits of historical reportage. More about Dawoud Bey.

At The Glenville Exchanges, Bey will have a dialog with youth photographers Jasmine, 17, Lai Lai, 17 and Yonnie, 19, who themselves are sometimes the subjects, to find voice through the lens of a camera. Often, these youth do not have the historical knowledge, coping skills, or benefits of having open, honest dialogue, and so have found expression in Shooting Without Bullets. The arts-based program, brain-child of artist-activist and youth advocate, Amanda King, assists black and brown teens to process complex social problems experienced by them and provides a radical platform to speak through artistic expression. More about this event.